MGM released the first official look of Jennifer Hudson as Aretha Franklin, singing Franklin’s signature song (and the film’s title) Respect.
Respect follows the rise of Aretha Franklin’s career from a child singing in her father’s church’s choir to her international superstardom and co-stars Forest Whitaker, Marlon Wayans, Audra McDonald, Marc Maron, Tituss Burgess, Saycon Sengbloh, Hailey Kilgore, Skye Dakota Turner, Tate Donovan, and Mary J. Blige. Aretha Franklin passed away in 2018 but hand-picked Hudson to play her in the film.
For Hudson, who won a Supporting Actress Oscar playing Effie White, one of Broadway’s most iconic characters, in 2006’s Dreamgirls, she’s probably licking her wounds after the critical drubbing she got for Cats (which opens today) and is probably hoping this does a bit to reform her performance image.
Respect is directed by Liesl Tommy and written by Tracey Scott Wilson, lensed by 6-time Emmy nominee Kramer Morgenthau (Game of Thrones), costumed by Tony winner Clint Ramos (Eclipsed) and is expected to be released by MGM on August 14, 2020. Here is the first look and teaser poster.